how to choose an engineering college
Its that time of the year when after 12th you need to decide if you want medicine, architecture or engineering. Those opting for M.B.B.S will be burdened with easy to grasp”quantity” study and those for engineering will challenging Math and Mechanics “quality” study, where you need to understand concepts and not only “ratta”. Of course each of the 8 semesters will have 1 subject where you can “ratta”, but that too,difficult. So if you are up to the challenge, and decide to spend the next 4-6 years of your life here, you better learn how to choose an engineering college first.
I am writing this as an ex-student, not as a professor, counsellor etc.”engineer perspective”..i wont talk of infrastructure or career placements or good faculty, i will talk about what really matters and what will actually help you to get through your 4 years smoothly, because it is one hell of a rough ride. Engineering is EXTREMELY difficult,(not trying to scare anyone) but it is a fact, and checking into a college that makes things easy for you instead of complicating it further will be of great benefit.
Before you go for the CAP rounds or any admission rounds in your respective states, it doesn’t hurt to do a little research,talk to current students of a few colleges if you can, to give you an idea of campus life and more or less opt which colleges to apply for and which to avoid. At the time o admission, you are sitting in a room with a giant screen in front of you showing the seats getting filled up live, you can sometimes see your favourite college getting full, and you disappointed. Its a very tense,fast moving atmosphere and you too have to act quickly,depending on your merit you will be allotted a seat, but if you did some homework before you will be prepared.
I suggest going through the previous years CAP round results to give you a brief understanding of where you might get your seat. The cut off marks fluctuate 10-20% so you can still make a good analysis. You shouldn’t go into the admission hall and choose the wrong college or stream and regret it later.
The best (worst)experience of this is my own. I went alone for the admission rounds without any family or friend, no one to guide me, nor any good article like this to help me.
What i wanted–I really wanted Computer stream as i was obsessed with Computers since i was a kid, I also wanted it near my place of residence at South Mumbai so the commute wouldn’t be hectic.
What i got– I ended up with electrical engineering in Navi mumbai (new bombay), which was 3 hours travel for me everyday,it turned my life upside down and in every semester i was doing an average of 45% attendance instead of 75%.
Because i stayed far,there were times where i had to give fresh and KT papers one after another on consecutive days.By the time i reached home i barely had enough of time to brush up on the next days paper as i was so tired from the travel.Now if you are thinking it would be better to stay in a hostel, think not,its a lousy atmosphere and not much studying can be done there.Unless you are from another state, don’t think about a hostel or PG accomodation.
STAFF (PROFS, LAB ASSISTANTS)
The single most important reason on my list.I am not talking about how to check how many PHds or Mtechs or big professors with big degrees are there on the faculty or how well they can teach.
The only thing that matters is how good they are with respect to=->
1.How much they will allow your attendance to drop before getting u into trouble
2.How easily they will accept your submission without making you run around after them
3.How easily and leniently they will do paper correction,as 6 out of 8 semesters are checked internally
4.How easily they let you go though practicals and viva.
5.How easily they are invigilating during exams.
In my experience as stated before, i had less than 50% in all semesters without any problem,except twice in F.E and S.E where my parents were called.Submission-once in F.E two profs weren’t accepting my file for submission,rest all semesters were OK)
I want to put a quick note to never underestimate lab assistants. They maybe not on the level of profs and lecturers, but they can help you immensely in practicals,exams etc. They could be a difference between a pass and an ATKT. Make them your best friends.
STREAM VS COLLEGE
One important factor while trying to zero in on a possible college is to first check and ask yourself what stream you have in mind either COMPUTERS, I.T, EXTC etc. Remember to have at least three options if your score is less than 75%. IF you have a better score, obviously you have a better chance at getting what you want. I believe that each of us have a favourite stream that we want, but some maybe disappointed if due to a lower composite score they get another stream or if they get their favourite stream it will be in a far away college.
Here is a few things to consider.All these colleges all fall under the affiliation of the same state University, hence upto a certain level they all have equal weight-age. There maybe some accreditation/ rating, which may give them higher and lower grades, but that isn’t of much consequence because when you go for a job, as 95% of the companies hiring you will only look at what University you did your degree from and maybe your final year score. Chances are they wont even know the names of more than 5-6 colleges, so if you got your degree from D.G Patil or A.B vidyalaya wont make a difference.
The reason why im asking to give focus on a stream rather than college is because of the passion which a student may have for a particular stream of his/her choice. The student may study with more passion for a stream they like rather than something that they got based only on their merit score. I got Electrical where i really wanted Computers, and to this day i wish i could have gotten COMP. I never enjoyed studying the Electrical subjects and because of that i ended up with a big pile of KTs.
CROWD AND CAMPUS
Crowd, friends of your same social level will eventually make your years in that college either worthy to remember or a total nightmare. If you are not having fun outside of class, you will never have fun studying also.You need to have good friends to bunk lectures together with, and also be able to study with them at the same time. It took me many days to adjust to my new engineering college, as i just couldn’t find anyone to hangout with, i was scared i might just leave the college as i was having such a bad time. finally after 5 days i met this girl in class and we became great friends, after that i started to love the college and it became good fun even attending lectures. Of course sadly later on, i got a drop and she passed on, but i made better friends in the next batch and studied well to clear my backlog. One thing in this context i would like to add is that while having harmless fun is ok, avoid getting into a relationship as it almost means a certain drop. I have seen it happen to 2 of my female friends. It is too big a distraction, and Engineering is way too difficult to be given a part time commitment.
The atmosphere and people around you can make your engineering experience a whole lot more fun. Don’t be afraid to visit a few campuses and check out the vibe of the college before the rounds start.See if you think you would be able to fit in there and then note it down in your probable list of colleges you would like to put down in your form for the CAP rounds.